Thursday, January 23, 2014
Time is more valuable than money. Take it from me.
This week I am moving away from one of the most expensive cities on earth and what I will tell you (as I am packing) is that time is something I hope to gain in my next spot and money is something that I hope to use less. After a week at the beach, I found that I never looked at my watch. It helped that I never had a place I needed to be, but still, even with my own body clock screaming coffee every few hours, I didn’t look down at my wrist, not once. I rarely pulled out my phone and I practically forgot the password to my email. In just one week you say, with your eyebrows arching like the manhattan bridge—impossible. But it’s true. Time is a precious thing and for the week, finding a broken sand dollar was a nice change from handing everyone around me a crisp twenty dollar bill, and not once did I care what time it was.
As it turns out, finding time to do nothing is exactly what we need. To this day I am convinced that the west coast gets just as much done as the east coast. When did the human race start racing? Some may argue that rushing gets more done, but I disagree. New York is an island of rushers. I can tell because they are rarely looking up, they step out into the street long before the walk signal emerges, and they run for cabs like their lives depend on it. Oregon is a rainforest of calm, cool and collected. With coffee shops that let you sit idle for hours, with cashiers that want to discuss much more than the weather, but want to dig deep asking about family trees and yearly traditions (even in the express line) and cars that stop for every pedestrian they see (even the ones that are a mile away). We are an oasis of waiters and drifters.
Personally, I would rather linger and meander then push, rush and hastily get things done. I would rather sip than slug. I would rather hold the door behind me than let it slam shut on someone else. I could argue that rushing is a sign of being disorganized, or only giving a small part of yourself to every task–what my mom terms–half baked. I’m certain that if you never worry and never hurry, you will amount to much more than you would have had you been rushing. After all, time is time. What will you really gain from rushing? What will you gain from pushing? Is it really worth the money? Is it really worth saving a few extra lousy minutes to rush? You will lose those minutes and you will never get them back, not for all the money in the world.
For some, it can be hard to take time to slow down. At times, I have been known to schedule myself into my own schedule. A block of time will simply say RJS and this is a time where I know I can catch up on anything from notes to friends, sleep, a long run, reading or just simply wandering, finding a new coffee shop.
I have noticed a new trend in 2014–the urge to set aside time. Blogs, magazines, books, and articles all supply tips and tricks to set aside time for long dinners, slow walks, and ideas for slowing down. My philosophy–make it a lifestyle–not a time slot. Unplug, unwind, breathe. There are only 24 hours in a day. Slowing down doesn’t mean it won’t get done, it means prioritizing, and making the most of the busy time so that you have extra time to linger and wait around the edges, because at the end of the day, time is priceless.
This New Year, I challenge you to linger.
This cup is for Charly–because you decided to stay
And for Alix, who is happy to make hanging out and lingering a lifestyle
(note: I had the best time with you girls).